Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire: Movie Review

Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire Movie Review: A Typical Snyder Affair in Space

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We had high expectations for "Rebel Moon - Part One: A Child of Fire," as Zack Snyder put his own flair on a space opera. However, "Rebel Moon - Part One" ultimately disappoints, resembling the typical Snyder release - visually appealing but lacking the narrative depth to match its aesthetic. And no, its problems don't stem from the hype or being the first film in a duology (as it actually had the premise and ingredients to make a compelling first film); it's simply because this film lacked any soul or depth or direction.

When a peaceful farming colony on the edge of the galaxy finds itself threatened by the armies of the tyrannical Mother World, Kora (played by Sofia Boutella), a mysterious stranger living among the villagers, becomes their best hope for survival. Tasked with finding trained fighters to assist in their impending and seemingly impossible stand against the forces of the Mother World, Kora assembles a small band of warriors who share a common need for redemption and revenge. As the shadow of an entire Realm bears down on the unlikeliest of moons to rebel, a battle over the fate of a galaxy will be waged, forming a new army of heroes and inspiration in the process.

Creating a new and compelling world from scratch is no easy feat, and "Rebel Moon - Part One" had the basics in place to make this franchise work. In its first half-hour, we found ourselves invested in the small farming colony where our story begins. We loved the dynamics between the mysterious Kora, the power struggles among the colony's people as they debated their next move to prevent the colony's demise, and the portrayal of the tyrannical Mother World. However, as soon as our main character, Kora, decides to rebel and confront the Mother World's forces (eventually departing the colony to build a team to help her in her cause), the film falters.

The primary issue lies in the film's failure to allow us to truly connect with characters beyond Kora. The film merely takes us to a random planet, find someone to recruit, and incorporates beautiful action sequences from time to time to keep things moving and somewhat interesting. This pattern repeats multiple times until the team is complete. Due to this random character selection approach (like you were picking random toys in a toy box), we never found ourselves engaged in the lore Snyder aimed to construct because there was simply nothing substantial to latch onto. While the planets, characters, and universe of "Rebel Moon" were stunning to look at, they lacked any compelling characteristic to be memorable even. It felt like this story needed a runtime of around 3 hours rather than the roughly 2 hour duration it had. It's becoming ludicrous, but it's probable that a "Snyder Cut" will be revealed in the future to "showcase" the true potential of "Rebel Moon - Part One." At this juncture, the only advice we can offer is this: if you dislike Zack Snyder films, you should skip "Rebel Moon" altogether as this is a Snyder film in space. However, if you're a die-hard fan of Snyder's style, the visuals alone might be more than reason enough to give this a shot. 

Rating: 2 reels

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